George Furukawa: Leader of the cover band

January 9th, 2009  |  by  |  Published in People

George Furukawa

George Furukawa, BA in journalism ’76 Mānoa

Roots: Pearl City
Non-musical career: Freelance writer/editor
First instrument: Vox four-string electric bass guitar
Most fun gig: M. Dyer & Sons 40th anniversary celebration in November 2008 at Hawaiʻi Prince Golf Club
Philosophy: “Playing music is a continuous learning experience.”

A self-taught musician, George Furukawa advises aspiring musicians to pursue music with passion and persevere.

He began his own musical journey of discovery in 1967, playing with Lovin Sound. He continued playing through college in Sounds of Innocence and while working as a journalist.

In 2005, Furukawa formed Fusion, a variety cover band. The name reflects the mixed plate of ethnic heritages that infuses the band—Samoan, Hawaiian, Filipino and Japanese.

Two members also have UH ties—vocalist Marlene Baldueza (BBA in marketing ’99, Mānoa) and drummer Mike Nakamoto, a Mānoa student majoring in Japanese. Furukawa plays bass.

The goal was to offer something aurally as well as visually exciting to everyone that was a good fit for a range of functions, from family occasions to company banquets to fashion shows.

“The best part of playing is making people happy and getting them to groove to Fusion’s music, whether it’s listening or dancing to it,” Furukawa says.

“The ultimate experience and satisfaction is seeing people enjoying your music—providing music for their souls. Music is a universal language.”

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